Conference Paper

A Case Study of Software Engineering Methods Education Supported By Digital Game-Based Learning—Applying the SEMAT Essence Kernel in Games and Course Projects

Authors:
To read the full-text of this research, you can request a copy directly from the authors.

Abstract

Software Engineering (SE) education shapes the perspectives taken by future software engineers. SE processes/methods represent an important knowledge area demanded by industry and curriculum guidelines but belong to those knowledge areas, which are challenging to be taught intuitively accessible. Just providing islands of knowledge is not sufficient in SE education. It has to provide students with the ability to focus on details demanded by stakeholders, technology, and the project environment but to keep a holistic view of the SE endeavor at the same time. To develop demanded competencies—knowledge, skills, and attitudes—SE education has to enable learning experiences where concepts, methods, and tools are perceived as actually supportive, providing orientation and guidance. Taking the high and increasing number of varying existing SE processes/methods into account, the knowledge provided has to be highly transferable to prepare students for their future SE endeavors. This paper presents the results of a case study conducted in summer semester 2016 to evaluate an Integrated Approach introducing students to SE methods based on simulation, Digital Game-Based Learning (DGBL), and SEMAT Essence.

No full-text available

Request Full-text Paper PDF

To read the full-text of this research,
you can request a copy directly from the authors.

... Only providing a bulk of knowledge is not sufficient and must not be the goal of the degree or course. In order to provide an environment where students can apply their learned knowledge and skills, a game based simulation approach can be a potential way [34]. It is of utmost important to design and create a curriculum which is engaging and up to the highest standards. ...
Conference Paper
Improving and adapting strategies to teach Software Engineering (SE) insights is one of the primary goals of SE schools. Every year, we come up with plenty of studies that provide suggestions and guidelines on improving teaching methods, problem-solving strategies, and curriculum design. On the other hand, we do not know how the world's top-notch universities focus on the process and academic improvement. This study shares our experience while investigating the Tsinghua University (QS World ranked 17) (https://www.topuniversities.com/universities/tsinghua-university}, School of Software process and providing an initial guideline for further improvement. In this study, we, first, aim to gather suggestions and guidelines given in the literature. Secondly, we observe and analyze the feedback given by external reviewers and, as an example, map those feedback-augmented findings and suggestions onto school processes. Lastly, we suggest how the software school can further enhance the teaching strategies, curriculum design, and problem-solving skills.
... Progress Poker es un juego de cartas que tiene por objetivo enseñar a los profesionales de software a aplicar las alfas, por medio de dinámicas colaborativas. MetriCC también es un juego de cartas, cuyo objetivo es que estudiantes de Sim4SEEd, una aplicación web, con la que los estudiantes de la carrera de IS pueden repasar los conceptos relacionados con alfas de Essence, los cuales deben aprenderse previamente por medio de clases presenciales [16]. ...
Article
Essence 1.2 is a standard that facilitates the study of Software Engineering by essentializing the broad empirical knowledge related to this area. The main component of the standard is the kernel, which contains alphas that make it possible to assess the state and progress of a software project through the use of a holistic thinking framework. This paper presents an educational mobile application, denominated as Alphalingo, with which to learn the alphas, and which promotes active and meaningful learning through the inclusion of various learning styles, gamification and spaced learning. The educational proposal was evaluated by means of a formal experiment and a replication, which were carried out with professionals working at two software enterprises in Mexico. The experimentation method consisted of randomly selecting the participants in order to form two groups: a control group, whose members attended classes in order to learn the Essence 1.2 kernel alphas, and an experimental group, which learned using Alphalingo. The statistical results obtained from the meta-analysis carried out indicate that the use of Alphalingo has a greater degree of learning effectiveness and a greater motivating effect than the face-to-face method.
... There is an evident change in the methodologies to teach software engineering along with the growth of technology. Some examples are game-based teaching and learning platforms (Pieper, Lueth, Goedicke, & Forbrig, 2017;Tillmann, De Halleux, & Xie, 2011), cloud-based learning environments (Rana, Saleh, & Ghazali, 2017), and sensor-based cognitive approach (Gandhi, 2016), which are guid-ed by technology rather than classroom pedagogies and therefore beyond the scope of the current study. ...
Article
Full-text available
Aim/Purpose: This paper presents the findings of an Activity-Oriented Teaching Strategy (AOTS) conducted for a postgraduate level Software Engineering (SE) course with the aim of imparting meaningful software development experience for the students. The research question is framed as whether the activity-oriented teaching strategy helps students to acquire practical knowledge of Software Engineering and thus bridge the gap between academia and software industry. Background: Software Engineering Education (SEE) in India is mainly focused on teaching theoretical concepts rather than emphasizing on practical knowledge in software development process. It has been noticed that many students of CS/IT background are struggling when they start their career in the software industry due to inadequate familiarity with the software development process. In the current context of SE education, there is a knowledge gap between the theory learned in the classroom and the actual requirement demanded by the software industry. Methodology: The methodology opted for in this study was action research since the teachers are trying to solve the practical problems and deficiencies encountered while teaching SE. There are four pedagogies in AOTS for fulfilling the requirements of the desired teaching strategy. They are flipped classroom, project role-play for developing project artifacts, teaching by example, and student seminars. The study was conducted among a set of Postgraduate students of the Software Engineering programme at Cochin University of Science and Technology, India. Contribution: AOTS can fulfil both academic and industrial requirements by actively engaging the students in the learning process and thus helping them develop their professional skills. Findings: AOTS can be molded as a promising teaching strategy for learning Software Engineering. It focuses on the essential skill sets demanded by the software industry such as communication, problem-solving, teamwork, and understanding of the software development processes. Impact on Society: Activity-oriented teaching strategies can fulfil both academic and industrial requirements by actively engaging the students in the SE learning process and thus helping them in developing their professional skills. Future Research: AOTS can be refined by adding/modifying pedagogies and including different features like an online evaluation system, virtual classroom etc.
Conference Paper
The workshop connects to the central theme “Educating for the Future” of CSEE&T 2020 and thus explores opportunities to improve Software Engineering education and training by using Essence. Essence, an OMG Standard, delivers essential, universal elements found in all Software Engineering (SE) endeavours and a language to describe and extend these elements and their use in concrete practices to tailor SE methods to teams' needs. Its Kernel separates the stable What and Why from the more adaptable How. That way, it provides an essential thinking framework facilitating the adoption and customization of practices and methods. As such, it supports multiple ways of educating SE students as well as training practitioners for the future. The first deployments of Essence in industry and academic courses around the globe show promising results. But since it is an entirely new way to think about SE practices, methods, and their building blocks—it requires some effort and thought to dive into the standard. This workshop facilitates the adoption by sharing experiences, best practices, and lessons learned.
Chapter
Full-text available
This chapter explores the context for the new paradigm of learning emerging in education, in relation to key critical concepts that centre around gamification, immersion, interface and social interactivity. The chapter provides an extensive literature review as part of the context for the paradigm shift, including considering serious games and gamification, and social learning as key constructs for considering the changes to educational practices and infrastructure faced by educationalists and instructors over the coming years. The chapter also provides an historical background section and highlights some of the conceptual work that has been done already to frame the changes, firstly in relation to the notion of ‘gamification’ through the lens of an historical overview of serious games and secondly in a section exploring the need for an overall model for serious game design based upon four models and frameworks developed in past research work including the four dimensional framework, exploratory learning model, multimodal interface architecture model and the game-based learning framework. The chapter aims to set out the key conceptual territory for serious game design and bring together the main theoretical areas under consideration for future development of effective serious game content.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Given the time limit, software engineering courses in universities can only emphasize a particular development approach or method; therefore, it is challenging to prepare graduates to face the diverse range of approaches and methods used by industry. One of the issues software engineering education faces is the lack of a framework to understand and compare the similarities and differences among diverse practices used by different companies versus what students learn at school. Software Engineering Methods and Theory (SEMAT) is a new international initiative that bridges the gap among industry, education and research. SEMAT latest result is the submission to OMG standard, namely the Essence - Kernel and Language for Software Engineering. Instead of teaching diverse range of software engineering development methods, Essence provides a novel way of thinking of the different software development methods and approaches. This paper discusses the value of Essence to software engineering education and the preliminary feedback from university professors and lecturers.
Article
Full-text available
One challenge in software engineering education is to give students sufficient hands-on experience in actually building software. This is necessary so that students can understand which practices and techniques are useful in various situations. Some researchers have advocated alternative teaching methods to help in this regard. If successful, such methods could give students some experience with different approaches' effects in a shorter, more constrained time period. We examine one such approach, game-based learning, here.
Chapter
Full-text available
Immersive games tend to induce "flow," a state in which a game player loses track of time and is absorbed in the experience of game play. Flow is conducive to engagement, and engagement is conducive to learning, yet immersive games lack the assessment infrastructure to maximize learning potential. Typical assessments are likely to disrupt flow in immersive games. Thus there is a need for embedded (or "stealth") assessments that would be less obtrusive and hence less disruptive to flow. This paper proposes an approach for embedding assessments in immersive games to reveal what is being learned during the gaming experience. This effort draws on recent advances in assessment design. Key elements of the approach include: (a) evidence-centered design, which systematically analyzes the assessment argument, including the claims to be made about the learner and the evidence that supports (or fails to support) those claims, and (b) formative assessment to guide instructional experiences. This paper illustrates how elements of this approach have been applied in a non- game setting (i.e., Cisco network training simulation) and how it could be applied to an existing immersive game setting (i.e., Oblivion). Finally, the chapter offers suggestions for extending and applying this approach not only for existing games but for the design of new games.
Article
Full-text available
Within the cognitive load theory research community it has become customary to report theoretical and empirical progress at international conference symposia and in special issues of journals (e.g., Educational Psychologist 2003; Learning and Instruction 2002). The continuation of this custom at the 10th European Conference for Research on Learning and Instruction, 2003, in Padova, Italy, has materialized in this special issue of Instructional Science on the instructional implications of the interaction between information structures and cognitive architecture. Since the 1990s this interaction has begun to emerge as an explicit field of study for instructional designers and researchers. In this introduction, we describe the basics of cognitive load theory, sketch the origins of the instructional implications, introduce the articles accepted for this special issue as a representative sample of current research in this area, and discuss the overall results in the context of the theory. It is generally accepted that performance degrades at the cognitive load extremes of either excessively low load (underload) or excessively high load (overload) – see e.g., Teigen (1994). Under conditions of both underload and overload, learners may cease to learn. So, whereas learning situations with low processing demands will benefit from practice conditions that increase the load and challenge the learner, learning situations with an extremely high load will benefit from practice conditions that reduce the load to more manageable levels (Wulf and Shea 2002). Cognitive load theory (CLT; Paas, Renkl and Sweller 2003; Sweller 1988, 1999) is mainly concerned with the learning of complex cognitive tasks, where learners are often overwhelmed by the number of information elements and their interactions that need to be processed simultaneously before meaningful learning can commence. Instructional control of this (too) high load, in order to attain meaningful learning in complex cognitive domains, has
Article
Learning Theory and Online Technologies offers a powerful overview of the current state of elearning, a foundation of its historical roots and growth, and a framework for distinguishing among the major approaches to elearning. It effectively addresses pedagogy (how to design an effective online environment for learning), evaluation (how to know that students are learning), and history (how past research can guide successful online teaching and learning outcomes).
Conference Paper
Software processes and Software Engineering (SE) methods belong to those knowledge areas which are challenging to be taught intuitively accessible. The specification “Kernel and Language for Software Engineering Methods (Essence)” [1] claims to deliver an approach to consolidate all essential dimensions of SE-endeavors into an universal compact and actionable kernel. This paper describes the characteristics of the Essence specification with respect to its suitability for use in academic SE education where students get introduced to the world of SE methods and software processes. To enable a deep understanding of the Essence concepts in an academic setting a suitable approach is needed. The integrated approach presented in this paper introduces students stepwise into the concepts of Essence. It lets them explore the concepts in a virtual simulated game environment and finally deploy them in real world SE endeavors. Thereby an efficient and engaging learning arrangement supports the active construction of knowledge. It encourages active exploration, enables the viewing of the learning object from different perspectives and promotes articulation and reflection in social interchange early in the learning process. Key objectives of this approach are to sensitize students for the diversity of dimensions that have to be taken into account in a SE endeavor, to provide a valuable guidance for using SE methods inside and outside of their curriculum and to enable students to transfer their newly acquired knowledge to other contexts.
Article
an important challenge for educators is to teach relevant content in a way that facilitates thinking / this chapter discusses some possible approaches for meeting this challenge discussion focuses on the concept of anchored instruction; we explore why we need it and why it is advantageous we also argue that, although anchored instruction can be implemented without the use of technology, it becomes more powerful when used in conjunction with microcomputer technologies and videodiscs (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Kernel and Language for Software Engineering Methods (Essence) Version 1.1
  • Object Management Group
Object Management Group, "Kernel and Language for Software Engineering Methods (Essence) Version 1.1." Dec-2015.
Developing and Customizing Practices | EssWork Practice Workbench
  • Ivar Jacobson International
Ivar Jacobson International, "Developing and Customizing Practices | EssWork Practice Workbench," 2017. [Online]. Available: https://www.ivarjacobson.com/esswork-practice-workbench. [Accessed: 02-Feb-2017].
Cognition, education, and multimedia: Exploring ideas in high technology
  • J D Bransford
  • R D Sherwood
  • T S Hasselbring
  • C K Kinzer
  • S M Williams
J. D. Bransford, R. D. Sherwood, T. S. Hasselbring, C. K. Kinzer, and S. M. Williams, "Anchored instruction: Why we need it and how technology can help," Cognition, education, and multimedia: Exploring ideas in high technology, pp. 115-141, 1990.
The 10th Annual State of Agile TM Report | VersionOne
  • Inc Versionone
VersionOne, Inc., "The 10th Annual State of Agile TM Report | VersionOne." [Online]. Available: http://versionone.com/pdf/VersionOne-10th-Annual-State-of-Agile-Report.pdf. [Accessed: 15-Aug-2016].